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Asher Maze – Folkestone’s mysterious art sign creator speaks out


Writer Simon Richmond Images courtesy of Asher Maze


Who is Asher Maze and what are they up to with their art sign project around town?

Over the last year, eagle-eyed Folkestonians will have clocked a few curious-looking signs around town. On closer inspection, these “public notices” reveal themselves to be the subversive, thoughtprovoking and witty works of an artist who goes by the name Asher Maze. We reached out to Asher to find out more, but they told us they would prefer – for the time being – to remain anonymous. However, they were prepared to answer our questions by email. This is what they shared with the Foghorn:

“We had family trips to Folkestone when I was growing up, to visit cousins, but I’ve only been living down here full time since 2021. It’s definitely inspiring me creatively and I’m certainly a Folkestone artist these days.

“My April Fool’s Day viaduct signs [along the Foord Rd, with the giraffes] were up for months and one is still there. Like other signs I alter, these signs had been damaged and sprayed with tags when I found them. I still don’t know what they were for as they were blank. The changes I made didn’t compromise or damage the signs, so I guess that’s why one is still going. I’d love to think the council workers found them amusing. Anything you do in a public place is very vulnerable. I’ve done work that I haven’t posted about because it didn’t last long enough.

“The Fishing Museum is a wonderful place, and I had this surreal, floating bowler hat idea based on the photos of old fisherman, like Alf Poole, who wore them. Maybe one blew off once, and now it’s flown back home. That sign links with ‘Sign of the Times’ around the corner. The quotation about the museum is genuinely from Creative Folkestone – I did my research.

“Folkestone is a very inspiring place, even people who don’t know much

about modern art are very open-minded. I think because of the great work that Creative Folkestone has been doing Folkestonians have seen how art can lift the town in tough times and can bring visitors from all over Europe with festivals like the Triennial. It’s a pity that one is only held every three years. It should be annual! My only reservation is that future art commissions should consider more local artists. Us artists down here could do with support and opportunities too.

“In terms of the future, I‘m vexing lots of new ideas and more street art is coming – until the money runs out again. For the new art works in Folkestone I will just say, look out for rainbows, Mr Nobody, and something at the Folkestone sign on Harbour Arm in time for Halloween.

ashermaze.com @asher.maze